Government, opposition established for confrontation of the Citizenship Law Project (Amendment)

NEW DELHI: Parliament will witness a confrontation between the government's opposition and the Citizenship Bill (Amendment) that seeks to provide Indian nationality to Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Paris, Jainists and Buddhists fleeing persecution of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. The bill has been attacked by the opposition, minority groups and others for excluding Muslims and also because it disagrees with the Constitution, which does not differentiate between citizens based on their faith.

Defense Minister Rajnath Singh made it clear at the BJP parliamentary party meeting on Tuesday that contentious legislation was the top priority of the government, equating its importance with the decision to convert Article 370 into a dead letter and asked the Party lawmakers who guarantee their presence when Interior Minister Amit Shah presents the bill next week. The cabinet is expected to approve the bill on Wednesday.

Minorities in neighboring theocratic countries have been subject to continuous persecution, forcing them to seek asylum in India. Giving citizenship to six minorities will be another push from the Modi government to the spirit of sarva dharma sambhav, defense minister Rajnath Singh said in his speech.

The Citizenship Bill (Amendment) has been vehemently opposed by opposition parties such as Congress, Trinamool, DMK, Samajwadi Party, RJD and Left, and even regional parties such as BJD have expressed reservations. The BJP numbers in the Lok Sabha are clearly not a problem and, although the party will need support in the Rajya Sabha, it has been able to gather support after the outcome of the 2019 general elections. Its allies are expected as JD (U) and Akali Dal support the bill.

However, the opposition hopes that BJP's allies are not as enthusiastic about the legislation and friendly parties like AIADMK will also be forced to carefully consider whether to support the Citizenship Bill (Amendment). The citizenship bill (amendment) has caused resentment in the Northeast, and there are indications that the government is making a commitment to reassure the states of the region about the implications of granting citizenship to a large number of Hindus who The decades have come from Bangladesh.

BJP leader Himanta Sarma said on Tuesday that a final round of meetings had been held with Assam, Manipur and Nagaland. Formulations such as the provision of citizenship that do not lead to the state of residence in the smaller states of the northeast were discussed. It is believed that a guarantee of this nature will allow parties like BJD to support the bill.

At Tuesday's BJP meeting, Singh also raised the issue of absenteeism and stressed the disgust of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the limited presence in Parliament. Forbidden to attend the meeting of the parliamentary party by his recent statement on Nathuram Godse, the deputy of Bhopal, Pragya Thakur, did not attend although he had apologized in the Lok Sabha.

The government is likely to approve the citizenship bill (amendment) on Wednesday morning. The bill modifies the Citizenship Act of 1955 to make illegal immigrants in the selected categories eligible for citizenship.

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